Getting “The Call” is different when your work as a team. For those of you who don’t know, Lydia Dare is the pseudonym for the collaborative work of Jodie Pearson and Tammy Falkner. So for us, getting “The Call” was a bit like a game of telephone tag. We’ll use our real names to make it clear which one of us is talking.
Jodie: I was sitting at home, watching TV with my family and my cell phone rang. I looked at the number and noticed the area code was outside NYC. So I began to panic before I even answered. I rushed out of the room, yelling over my shoulder at my then husband, telling him it was a publisher. Then I flew into my room and tried to very calmly answer the phone, hoping I didn’t sound out of breath. Deb Werksman was on the other end and gushed about A Certain Wolfish Charm. I wish I could tell you all of the wonderful things she said… but I can’t. I didn’t hear them. My cell phone kept cutting in and out and I kept missing words here and there. But I didn’t want to ask her to repeat anything, because that seemed strange. I started pacing around the whole top level of my house trying to find a “clear” signal, and though I didn’t hear every word she said, I heard enough to know she wanted that book and was excited about the other two in the series.
Then I called Tammy…
Tammy: And I heard the phone ring, cringed, and decided to pick it up anyway. (I hate the phone.)
And Jodie said: You’re not going to believe who just called.
Tammy: I’m afraid to ask. But tell me, anyway.
Jodie: Deb Werksman.
Jodie: (Very slowly as though I was slightly addled.) Deb. Werksman.
Tammy: (She had my complete attention.) What did she want?
Jodie: Book one, evidently. And two and three, if she likes them when she reads them.
Tammy: That is so not funny.
I had pitched to Deb at RWA Nationals and she was my top pick during the submissions process because I liked her so much. Between Dominique’s enthusiasm for the business and Deb’s quiet way of making you feel like she’s really listening to you, it was a no-brainer for Jodie and me. What seemed odd was that we’d literally made the submission just days before. And there was Deb, telling us she was interested in the whole series.
Looking back on it, we both probably sounded like complete idiots. (Sorry, Jodie, for including you in my idiocy.) But it was so exciting having her call, having the feedback on the work Jodie and I had only started two months before. She compared our first book to one written by Loretta Chase. And I remembered one of our local RWA chapter members mentioning how much she loved Loretta Chase. So, I was floored, to say the least.
That’s what getting “The Call” was like for us.